Energy audits don’t have to be complex, expensive or time-consuming. On the contrary, business owners can conduct an effective, free energy audit of their business’s energy usage by simply walking around the building.
What is an Energy Audit?
An energy audit of a business is an analysis of the cost and efficiency of energy usage within a company. An energy audit looks for ways a business can minimize energy waste and make energy improvements.
In addition to savings on energy bills, lowering energy consumption can help reduce a business’s carbon footprint giving it a more environmentally responsible image in the industry and the community.
Constellation can help you get your energy usage under control with some tips on how to do your own energy assessment.
Keep an Eye on Your Thermostat?
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, heating and cooling are responsible for about 48 percent of energy usage in the average home.This makes it the biggest energy expenditure. The same can likely be said for your business.
When walking around your business to conduct a DIY, free energy audit, locate the thermostat of the building. Turning the thermostat up by just a couple of degrees can cut significant costs on energy bills.
Also, think about the position of the thermostat. Where it’s located might not be the best, or most efficient, spot. Ensure the thermostat is located out of direct sunlight and away from drafts, windows, and skylights, which could impede the performance and efficiency of the thermostat.
Give the Old Refrigerator in the Break Room a Second Look
How old are the appliances your business uses? As you continue to conduct the DIY energy assessment of your workplace, check the age and energy efficiency rating of appliances. A refrigerator in a staff kitchen, for example, that is more than 10 years old, is likely to be less energy efficient than newer models.
Look for the ENERGY STAR® rating of appliances and if the ratings are poor, investing in new appliances could result in you making long-term savings on energy bills.
Here’s a Bright Idea! Install Some New Light Bulbs
Energy-saving light bulbs use up to 80 percent less energy than standard bulbs. When you are walking around your business doing an energy audit, pay attention to the light bulbs. If the lights are fitted with traditional bulbs, think about replacing them with more energy-efficient options like CFL or LED bulbs.
Energy-saving light bulbs don’t need to be replaced as often as conventional bulbs, which may considerably cut your business’s energy usage.
And Turn Them Off When Nobody’s in the Room – Or Have Technology Do It For You
Have you ever left lights on when exiting an unoccupied room? If so, you’re not alone. In order to prevent this type of energy waste, install motion sensitive lighting on your premises.
This technology switches lights off when rooms are not in use, equaling energy savings!
Make the Most of Natural Lighting
Exposure to natural lighting in offices and other working environments comes with a number of benefits to businesses.
Improved levels of productivity are among those benefits, as is the substantial and sustained energy savings of using natural daylight.
Clearing windows and doors of blinds, curtains, clutter, and even dirt, allows more daylight to flood the workplace. And more daylight means your business will be less reliant on lighting that uses energy.
Become More Eco-Friendly with Renewable Energy
As businesses increasingly look for ways to become sustainable and energy efficient, one option is to switch to renewable energy.
By harvesting energy from the sun, having solar panels installed may offer you the opportunity to reduce your business’s energy usage while helping to keep our planet healthy.
Switch Off Those Devices Over Night
Carry out an energy audit when your staff goes home for the evening. This way you will be able to see what devices and appliances have been left on.
If computers are left on, for example, break your staff’s ‘standby’ habit. Insist your employees no longer keep PCs and tablets on standby when they leave for the day. Instead, make it company policy to turn off all devices.
Do you run a business and have you conducted your own DIY energy audit? What steps do you take to save on energy consumption and be a more eco-conscious business? Tell us by commenting below.
Business Audit Photo via Shutterstock
This article, “How to Do An Energy Audit By Walking Around Your Business” was first published on Small Business Trends